On Tuesday, we had our very first values module workshop. We all went into this not know what we would be expected to do or what it would consist of. We started off by being organised into groups, this was done by a typical methods used in the classroom of having everyone line up in order of their birthday. We were then allocated a number 1-4, this would represent the group we were to go with. We then sat down at a table with the rest of our group, I already knew most people in the group so this helped when coming to the actual task in hand. A mysterious brown envelope was placed on the table, the excitement and wonder around the groups to the contents was amazing, everyone was so eager to find out what was in it. We were told that we were to make a guide for new students starting University and that we could only use the contents of the envelope and nothing else. When we opened the envelope we soon realised that the material we had was very little, we only had 3 pieces of paper, 1 pencil, 1 pen(which didn’t work), a few paper clips, rubber bands and 4 postet notes. At first glance it appeared that 2 of the other groups had far more resources than we did, except for one group who had far less than us. Everyone constructed their guides and throughout it appeared that the lecturer was favouring groups 1 and 2, rather than 3 (us) and 4. This became very apparent to us and this along with the lack of resources made us feel in someway underprivileged. We began to wonder why this was happening and questioned the fairness. It would later be revealed that all of this was part of a far larger plan. When we presented our guides, the lecturer again was very interested and full of praise for the first two groups, however when it came to us we were just told to sit down after finishing, I began to seriously wonder how this was fair as the other 2 groups were being heaped with praise. However, when it came to the final group the lecturer seemed completely disinterested with them and just looked around the room and at the clock during the entire presentation.
We were then let into a very big secret and that was the entire thing was an act and that the lecturer was told to act like that for the purpose of the task. This was ultimately done to show us how others feel in these situations in real life. I must admit that it really was not a nice thing to experience, however it has given me a great understanding. Furthermore, we were then told the significance of the different groups having the different amounts of materials, group 1 having the most and group 4 having the least. This signified how people can have very little in life. Also, during the activity, the group with the least tried to trade items with the group who had the most, the group declined as they already had everything the other group had and more. This shows what it can be like for people in society, there are people who have absolutely nothing and there are people who have everything they could ever want or need. This helped us to realise to an extent, how people who have nothing actually feel when they see others with excessive amounts of things that they may not actually need. It is appalling that in the world today there are people and to a larger extent, countries who have absolutely nothing. there are some countries, where people don’t even have clean water, we turn on a tap and out pours water, they trek miles upon miles to find water, which is mostly dirty and infected with diseases, in what way is this fair? The short answer is, it is’t and that is exactly what this task was getting us to think about and I believe that it done that absolutely superbly.
I believe that this is also very evident in schools. Throughout my time in placement last year, I seen this every day and it absolutely broke my heart, knowing that there was not really anything that I could do. Children do not see anything as being wrong and they are just happy to be a school with their friends. Still this breaks my heart when I think back on these experiences, all I wanted was the best for the children and whilst they were in school I made sure that they had the best time they could. This is a very emotional subject for me when I think back and I would just like to end on this in everyday life there is always going to be people who are in group 4 and people who are in group 1 and that is the sad fact about the world we live.